Once upon a time I was in Hawaii. The breezes were warm as I parted fuchsia flowering vines and walked onto a white sand beach with turquoise and emerald green water. I had just eaten an avocado burger in a beach shack on the North Shore. Nobody needed me to do a thing. I had no watch. My only plans were dinner later and a drive back down through the island…where the wait staff waited.
How about a tropical beach with crystal blue warm waters, white sand, gentle breezes, in an exotic location with few people and lots of good food…and drinks…and people waiting to wait just on you? I don’t want all the hassle of packing and planning. I want to be beamed there like in Star Trek and then back before homework and kids stuff starts…or maybe just after;) Actually maybe I do want a week. But then there is reintegration after it’s over. Back to busy, back to noise, and back to stress. Why can’t everyday life be more like a beach vacation?
And why does the beach make us happier? Is it just fresh air, a good book, control of your day, maybe sleeping in, avocado burgers, bougainvillea, and sunshine or is there something more?
Why, yes, there is…
The color blue has been shown to produce feelings of security and relaxation.
The sound of ocean waves actually alters our brain waves. The most pleasurable sounds have predictable wave patterns and low pitches…like those of the ocean. And, only ocean sounds activate a special part of the brain, which is associated with emotion and self-reflection. This leads to calmness or excitement–things that we know improve our mood.
Plus, when we go to the beach we have the tactile sensation of sand between our toes. Apparently, sand has such huge emotional power that is sometimes used in psychotherapy.
The ultraviolet rays in sunshine can improve your sense of physical and emotional wellbeing by stimulating the production of vitamin D – this boosts our production of serotonin, the chemical that works to keep us feeling alert, up-beat and happy. (from Beach Tomato)
Then there is what we do at the beach. We walk. We play. We swim. And when we move we reduce stress. We also make good memories and that, my friend, is just good happy.
If your life is blissfully beachlike everyday…this post isn’t for you. If you are staring at snow…still, well this one’s for you.